13 Nov 2021

Taranaki residents with any Covid-19 symptoms urged to get tested

11:39 am on 13 November 2021

Stratford mayor Neil Volzke is urging Taranaki residents to be proactive after the discovery of six positive Covid-19 cases in Stratford.

Covid-19 testing in Stratford

People queuing up for Covid-19 testing in Stratford yesterday. Photo: RNZ / Jimmy Ellingham

The cases are linked to the Auckland outbreak with one person having travelled to the city to pick up another family member to take them back to Taranaki to live with them.

The family were reluctant to be tested until one got very sick.

The group of two adults and three children are currently isolating at home, while one man is in Taranaki Base Hospital in a stable condition.

Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson said in yesterday's Covid-19 briefing that one of the six cases was vaccinated and none of them had been scanning in.

The government is currently being advised to keep Taranaki at alert level 2 but Robertson reminded anyone in Stratford with symptoms, not matter how mild, to get tested.

Stratford mayor Neil Volzke said Covid testing rates in the town were great yesterday with 701 tests carried out in the region on Friday and 335 of them were in Stratford.

He said anyone who has been considering getting vaccinated should do so.

"There are some people who are just hesitant and need some reassurance and I'd really encourage them to go and get tested or vaccinated if they haven't already been."

Volzke said there has also been a degree of complacency but that should change with the arrival of Covid-19 in the district.

The Ministry of Health has listed a number of locations of interest in Stratford including two supermarkets, a pharmacy and Bunnings Warehouse but Taranaki District Health Board's medical officer of health Dr Jonathan Jarman has said "all of Stratford should consider itself a location of interest".

Iwi-run testing station in Hāwera

An iwi-run testing station will be set up in Hāwera today, with two locations of interest recorded in the Taranaki town.

Bunnings and The Warehouse were visited recently by the Covid-19 cases who live in nearby Stratford.

Anyone who visited Bunnings on Tuesday morning between 9.30am and 10.30am is asked to get tested if they have symptoms.

The same applies to anyone who visited The Warehouse two weeks ago on Saturday, 30 October, between midday and 1pm.

Ngāti Ruanui iwi is holding a pop-up testing clinic at the Hāwera Community Hall from 10am today.

It says the testing is saliva-based and non-invasive.

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